Elementary School Kids Preparing for College

Posted at: 11/29/2012 5:39 PM
Updated at: 11/29/2012 5:51 PM
By: Dan Conradt

(ABC 6 NEWS) -- Middle school and high school are still ahead of them. But Thursday, the class of 2021 got a taste of what college is going to be like.

It's a program called "Get Ready For College"

"The whole goal of it is to stress to students at an early age the importance of going to college and all the benefits of a college education," said Riverland Community College’s Nel Zellar.  "What it will do in terms of increasing career opportunities, providing them with a stable income in life."

And on Thursday, the fourth graders from Neveln elementary school in Austin were getting ready.

"If you plant the seed earlier it gives them just that much more time to think about what they possibly would like to do," said Neveln fourth grade teacher Julie Nelson.

But a tour of Riverland was just one part of a larger curriculum

“A lot about the importance of getting grades, volunteering, extracurricular involvement, getting strong backgrounds in English, science and math," Nel Zellar explained.

"It gives us a head start to learn of other stuff, how long it takes and helps you think about if you would like to change or not," said nine year old Billy, who is already thinking about his future: “I would like to be a policeman.”

But it's okay to be undecided, as long as you're pointed in the right direction.

“What do you have to do?” Riverland’s Nel Zellar asked the Neveln fourth graders waiting for their tour in the college theater.

“Go to college!” the kids answered.

"Get Ready For College" is funded by the U-S Department of Education, and administered by the Minnesota Office of Higher Education.